August 19, 2003

Repairing a Defect in the Internet

One of the disappointing thing about the internet is the low quality of most invective on it. Invective there is in plenty. But high quality invective? It seems to have been driven out by a kind of Gresham's Law.

So I would like to acknowledge General Glut, whose invective is of a fine and vintage quality:

General Glut's Globblog: [DeLong's analysis] falls painfully short precisely because the Good Doctor is a liberal economist and thus has no real appreciation for either structure or history...

Posted by DeLong at August 19, 2003 03:31 PM | TrackBack

Comments

(Not to comment on the obvious non-sequitur that being a liberal economist precludes real appreciation for history or structure.)

The "has no real appreciation for either structure or history" comment is right up there with Ben Stein's (yes, _that_ Ben Stein) remark about Paul Krugman's "limited background in economics." This is in PK's web site at:

http://www.wws.princeton.edu/~pkrugman/tobin.html

The Ben Stein piece is no longer online, though.

Cheers!

Posted by: Jose Silva on August 19, 2003 04:37 PM

(Not to comment on the obvious non-sequitur that being a liberal economist precludes real appreciation for history or structure.)

The "has no real appreciation for either structure or history" comment is right up there with Ben Stein's (yes, _that_ Ben Stein) remark about Paul Krugman's "limited background in economics." This is in PK's web site at:

http://www.wws.princeton.edu/~pkrugman/tobin.html

The Ben Stein piece is no longer online, though.

Cheers!

Posted by: Jose Silva on August 19, 2003 04:38 PM

I have noticed this trend - any time Democrats/Liberals say something it is "partisan". Listen to the major media coverage of almost any issue and you'll see that the partisanship of Democrats is emphasized, but the conservative/Republican (not always the same thing ;) politicians' positions is usually presented vertatim. A good example is the coverage of the Democrats' criticisms of the Iraq invasion and the management of the occupation, this speech pattern reoccurs in mainstream media, not to mention the right-wing crazies that get to spout off on cable news.

Its a pretty weak rhetorical device, and I think betrays a certain ideological dishonesty.

Posted by: Joe Pundit on August 19, 2003 04:38 PM

(Not to comment on the obvious non-sequitur that being a liberal economist precludes real appreciation for history or structure.)

The "has no real appreciation for either structure or history" comment is right up there with Ben Stein's (yes, _that_ Ben Stein) remark about Paul Krugman's "limited background in economics." This is in PK's web site at:

http://www.wws.princeton.edu/~pkrugman/tobin.html

The Ben Stein piece is no longer online, though.

Cheers!

Posted by: Jose Silva on August 19, 2003 04:41 PM

Speaking of that exalted economics expert Ben Stein, I have to refer to this dig from DeLong's archives:

"I agree with Paul that Ben Stein's social marginal product is higher when he is judging the PetStar contest for Animal Planet than when he is writing about economic issues for the American Enterprise Institute."

Source: http://www.j-bradford-delong.net/movable_type/2003_archives/001633.html

BTW Jose: don't hit refresh when you comment, MT comments are screwy and it is posted after only a couple seconds...

Posted by: Joe Pundit on August 19, 2003 04:43 PM

Methinks Movable Type comment cgi's could use some improvement :-)

Sorry, I got three "not responding" errors. Apparently these translated into three instances of the same comment.

Posted by: Jose Silva on August 19, 2003 04:58 PM

MovableType seems to be stretched to its limit technically by high-traffic bloggers....they should do a rewrite. Sorry I went off topic, just had to get that dig in ;)

Posted by: Joe Pundit on August 19, 2003 05:28 PM

I was just wondering, umm what was his argument?

Posted by: Rob on August 19, 2003 05:56 PM

Rob, you know how to click on hyperlinks right?

Posted by: Joe Pundit on August 19, 2003 06:54 PM

I did click on the hyperlink, and I still saw no argument. There may have been something with the Euro, but it was not explained how it related to the three.

Posted by: Rob on August 19, 2003 07:29 PM

Yes, a similar thing happened here in the Eighties
"The Government is to privatise absolutely everything in sight. Labour MP's are arguing about the move, and about a dozen protestors [shot of half a million demonstrators] are marching against the Government"

Did you notice the buzzwords?

"Government" which of course includes opposition MP's.
"arguing" - negative, "protestors" and "marching" - not usually found in a positive context.

Then would come the fawning interview with the Tory politician "Yes, I'm completely disgusted with the Labour party I cannot believe that they would resort to such disgraceful behaviour" - despite the fact that we are riding roughshod over all democratic precedent, they should have added.

We were also regularly treated to shots *on the news* of stage-managed standing ovations of the Tories.

The way to fight it? Write to the media. Protest, complain to your local newspapers. Get onto TV shows and make your opposition known. Finally, riot. If they don't listen to you, protest until you can do no more, preferably peacefully - then fight back if you are provoked.

Luckily we had no deaths in the Poll Tax riots. But Thatcher went all the same. And I understand her tomb will be constantly guarded to ensure that no dancing takes place upon her ashes (you have to burn vampires, right?)

Posted by: Larry Lurex on August 20, 2003 04:55 AM

I'd like to point out that globlog is not using "liberal" in the way most of the commentors seem to think he is. He means neo-classical or neo-liberal. And from what I can tell there is a tendency towards a-historical thinking amongst neo-liberal economists like Prof Delong. Read the next post (http://www.j-bradford-delong.net/movable_type/2003_archives/002014.html), and you can almost hear people dancing the foxtrot and digging trenches. It'd be nice if we could find a Polanyi to answer posts like that _before_ the inevitable results.

msw

Posted by: msw on August 20, 2003 07:50 AM

Brad DeLong is a wonder, a beautiful engaging wonder. What would we possibly do were there no Brad DeLong. Phooey on right wing baloney.

Anne the Fair and Balanced

Posted by: Anne F&B on August 20, 2003 08:16 AM

"Phooey on right wing baloney"...meaning General Glut ???

scroll down to one of his August 15 entries:
"As regular readers of the Globblog know, the General is a Marxist political economist. When it comes to politics, however, the General is all populist. You may be surprised, but the General is also a Christian -- and a pretty (small-o) orthodox one at that."

Posted by: Patrick (G) on August 20, 2003 09:33 AM

Good grief. I goofed. Always read, then babble.

Anne

Posted by: anne on August 20, 2003 10:17 AM

Sorry General Sir

Fine blog. Never read it before. Sorry to have failed to get your criticism of Brad Delongs trade writing. I thought you a typical right winger and did not bother to read the criticism since I can not abide righters.

Anne

Posted by: Anne Unfair on August 20, 2003 10:23 AM

Brad,

Thanks for being such a good sport -- and jacking my site traffic up by about 500%!

Gen. Glut

Posted by: General Glut on August 20, 2003 02:37 PM

Brad,

Thanks for being such a good sport -- and jacking my site traffic up by about 500%!

Gen. Glut

Posted by: General Glut on August 20, 2003 02:42 PM

"One of the disappointing things about the internet is the low quality of most invective on it..."

Well, 90% of everything is crap, but as long as we still have among us those who can hurl out "theocratic intellectual zombie, strange creature from the ranks of the undead, creature that belongs at the benighted court of the medieval imperial Pope ..." there will be worthy models to aspire to. ;-)

Posted by: Jim Glass on August 20, 2003 03:11 PM

Disappointing. Just when I made a post on my site on the brilliance of Brad deLong I start finding less positive aspects of it.
Until recently I came up with only one disadvantage: the fact that the critics on the Bush-regime and US-press (with which I generally think I should agree) is put in such angry terms. Understandably but still not effective. Then I read on the problematic issue of Malthus.
Then I found critics towards Stiglitz in the form of personal attacks and now this treatment of the “general”.
Somebody calling himself “general” raises my eyebrow but that’s no reason to treat him like this. Strange to me that he calls himself “populist” too, but he is arguing!
For example on the subject of the FT’s article on the role of retail in US productivity-growth he comes up with challenging hypotheses. I don’t like this marxist thing on exploitation as if it where an economic term with no moral meaning but I think it’s fine that he asks attention for the big retailers “exploiting” suppliers. In other words I smell monopolistic trends here.

Posted by: Frans Groenendijk on August 20, 2003 05:32 PM

Disappointing. Just when I made a post on my site on the brilliance of Brad deLong I start finding less positive aspects of it.
Until recently I came up with only one disadvantage: the fact that the critics on the Bush-regime and US-press (with which I generally think I should agree) is put in such angry terms. Understandably but still not effective. Then I read on the problematic issue of Malthus.
Then I found critics towards Stiglitz in the form of personal attacks and now this treatment of the “general”.
Somebody calling himself “general” raises my eyebrow but that’s no reason to treat him like this. Strange to me that he calls himself “populist” too, but he is arguing!
For example on the subject of the FT’s article on the role of retail in US productivity-growth he comes up with challenging hypotheses. I don’t like this marxist thing on exploitation as if it where an economic term with no moral meaning but I think it’s fine that he asks attention for the big retailers “exploiting” suppliers. In other words I smell monopolistic trends here.

Posted by: Frans Groenendijk on August 20, 2003 05:37 PM
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